Yeovil UKIP candidates blame NHS crisis on women doctors

If you listen to most experts, the reason for the crisis in the NHS comes from under-resourcing and an aging population. But, no, UKIP council candidates in Chard in Yeovil have come up with another explanation. It’s all the fault of women doctors and their career breaks and part-time doctors.  Buzzfeed has the story:

The leaflet was produced by local UKIP councillors in Somerset who suggest alleged positive discrimination in the GP hiring process could ultimately lead to local surgeries closing altogether.

“How many female Doctors are there in your surgery working 2 or 3 days a week?” it asks, warning the issue could result in thousands of patients being left without access to medical care when GPs retire.

They have a quote from Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Yeovil, Daisy Benson:

UKIP might wish we were living in the 1950s, but it’s 2017!


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  • Stephen Booth 6th Apr '17 - 9:05am

    The annoying thing is that the useful idiots at the BBC (let alone the Mail, Sun et al) love sensational stories like this.
    We need to work harder to come up with our own such stories – they are there, local people, pillars of the community etc suddenly threatened by Brexit because they came to UK decades ago, married and had children who are British citizens but, hey, the prospect of deportation for mum or dad hangs over them.

  • That’s a ridiculously skin deep comment about the BBC.

  • I think it is fair to say that the online media loves stories like this, and that’s all many read these days. In this case it’s Buzfeed, not the BBC.

    These stories get hits, and posted on Facebook and talked about by people who think politics is boring.

  • The one liner is good but it is also inadequate. The claim has an emotional appeal to certain people as it has a ring of truth about it. The days of local GPs working all hours and being the same person you would call if you had an emergency in the night are long gone and (currently) women are more likely to take a bit of time out after children are born and some will ease back in with reduced hours.

    However the amount of time taken out for maternity cover and the easing back in time is very small in relation to a whole career of a GP (though when you have “lumpy” recruitment in to the profession it may not look that way), what is more likely is that GPs more generally are expressing a greater demand for more work life balance and taking more opportunities to do other things with their lives (some take time off to do medical work in other countries, some reduce hours as financial constrains reduce [kids leave home]), reducing the availability of the pool. Though this is a function of modern like and affects people predominantly outside the 20s/30s female population.

    Also GPs looking to spilt child care roles with partners may mean that more are available to do more of a “shift pattern” service (same length days but starting early finish earlier or start late to do early evening cover). So more child care conscious GPs may aid flexibility of opening hours.

    A good slap down to the UKIP claim is good, but also worth pointing out working patterns change due to many factors that are just modern life. Also worth saying that it creates opportunities that the miserablists overlook.

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